Beal quoted in New York Times article on green crabs

The New York Times quoted Brian Beal, a professor of marine sciences at the University of Maine at Machias, in an article about green crabs. A Canadian variety of green crab, noted as being “highly aggressive,” poses a threat to Maine’s soft-shell clam population and to eelgrass, a habitat for other marine creatures, according to the article. Efforts to reduce the effects of the crabs on the local ecosystem have included fencing off the habitats of soft-shell clams to keep out the crabs, and turning the crabs into culinary and other commercial products. Since the crabs have no native predator in North America, the only check on their population is cold winters, the article states. But rising temperatures in the Gulf of Maine mean “conditions are becoming more and more favorable for green crabs to survive and populate areas,” said Beal. The Bulletin of Central Oregon and the Independent included versions of the article in roundups of science briefs.